Dublin DrupalCon: Community, Sessions, Guinness, and Toast.
We’ve settled back into our routines, but we are still left with the warm afterglow of another DrupalCon. Palantir’s Tiffany Farriss, George DeMet, Ken Rickard, and Avi Schwab reflect on their time in Dublin and share their thoughts on what makes DrupalCon so special in our top 5 takeaways.
George: I was only at DrupalCon for a couple of days, but during that time I had a lot of great conversations with people in the community. I heard a lot of great ideas for how we can help make Drupal contribution more sustainable, and how we can make it easier for more people to engage with the project and the community in different ways.
Tif: Of late, I’ve been thinking about how Drupal can better communicate its community values and expectations at the organizational level (to and among the business ecosystem). Central to that is the question: what does it mean to be a good Drupal citizen whether you’re an individual, an organization or an end user of Drupal? I had some excellent conversations around that topic and am excited about the possibilities for recognizing all of the wonderful work that already happens within the community as a way to communicate and reinforce our community values.
4.) There’s always something to look forward to.
Avi: The Drupal Association team always works hard to put on a great event, but I feel like Dublin went more smoothly from a logistical standpoint than any DrupalCon I’ve been to. The venue staff assisted the volunteers at a phenomenal level, the venue itself was amazing, and the food was great.
Tif: I love reconnecting with old friends and making some new ones, and having thought-provoking conversations (especially with Kristof Van-Tomme, my friend and CEO of Pronovix).
Ken: DrupalCon is a great combination for me, in that I can always expect to run into old friends, and I am also guaranteed to meet new contributors. That makes it a special event.
3.) Yet, we’re always pleasantly surprised with what’s different.
George: Now that Drupal 8 has been out for some time and people are building sites with it, this DrupalCon felt more focused on the community. The new Being Human session track in particular had a lot of great content aimed at helping people learn how to contribute in a healthy way while also supporting others.
Avi: I’ve gone through some personal changes since NOLA, but for me Dublin felt much more like DrupalCons from our pre-D8 days, where developers dug into the hard problems and worked to share their solutions. It’s refreshing to be back in that seat both personally and as a community. D8 is moving along well and now has the confidence of most folks in the community, and we’re really putting it to work.
Tif: It’s remarkable how much the Drupal community has matured and expanded since my first DrupalCon Europe in Szeged in 2008.
2.) The sessions and events only reinforce how special the Drupal community is.
George: I very much appreciated Dries’ focus in his keynote on the core values and purpose (http://buytaert.net/drupal-collective-purpose) of the Drupal project and community, which set a really great tone for the event. Being able to see and hear how Drupal has made a positive difference in the lives of people all over the world was particularly inspiring.
Avi: After a few years of doing more PM work and less development, it was great to come back to Con and be able to absorb so much incredible knowledge from such great people. I also really enjoyed the Tuesday night party on the Cill Airne — too often our socializing is overpowered by loud music and tight spaces, but having a night outside, with a good bar and good folks, but not so much screaming, was greatly appreciated.
Tif: I always enjoy the Driesnote. Dries’ expanded purpose for the project (that Drupal is as much about people and impact as it is about code) resonates with me and affirms that Drupal continues to be aligned with Palantir’s purpose and values.
Ken: I went to Tim Millwood's session on the Workflow Initiative. That's the Drupal 8 core project that includes moving Workbench Moderation into core as Content Moderation. In many ways, it's the culmination of work that we started at the end of the Drupal 6 development cycle, so it's very rewarding to see the progress being made today.
1.) It wouldn’t be DrupalCon without a few shenanigans.
Avi: At the boat party, upon learning that I was a Palantiri, an Irish admirer of his began expounding on Mr. Ken Rickard’s amazing, deep, Hollywood-like voice and how, despite Ken’s contextual configuration talk being incredibly interesting, just listening to the words come from Ken’s mouth made it that much better.
Ken: We shared an apartment with Avi’s family. Avi's daughter Calliope tried to put buttered toast into everyone's pockets at the breakfast table every single morning. (I guess to save for later.) Which led to the viral quote. "No, you can't put toast in my pockets. I don't have any pockets."